DHS February planning help request (I know... another one!)

I know there are a lot of “help me figure out DHS” threads, so sorry for another one!

We will be at DHS on 2/13. It’s the last day for us and we have a 2 and 4 yo. Opening time just got updated to 8am, but I am expecting it will update again to 7am open. Of course, just because I think that will happen means it probably won’t. :slight_smile:

So, my plan is that DH and I will head over just before 7 so we can try to get a BG. From what I have read, I don’t think we need to get there before 6:50, right? I don’t have a great sense for how long it takes to get IN once you arrive. I plan to head back to our condo after that to get ready for the day, kids, etc. And then come back for a late start around 9:30am. My kids definitely won’t handle such an early start.

So with this thought of coming back for a later start for the kids: I have a 9:50 FPP for Little Mermaid, and 10:45am for TSM, and a 2:45pm ST currently (still working to earlier). Right now I have the chance to move the TSM to 8:40am, but I feel like that might just be too tight for us to get back to HS with the kids, and if we hit the tail end of the time like I would expect, we might not make the Little Mermaid 10am show, right? I want them to be able to have a relaxed time, and figured they will want to spend some time exploring TSL, so thought the 10:45 might suit us better. But my TP is not loving this. Should I be grabbing that 8:40am?

And some more questions…
If there is a 7am opening, will TSL rides all still be very busy at 9:30am?
What about for an 8am opening? If it doesn’t move back to 7am, my plan to go - and then go home and come back - this gets a lot more complicated…

If DH and I are able to get a BG and it makes sense, I am also wondering if we’ll be able to walk on to anything quickly before we head home. We plan to be at the back of that pack and sitting still for the BG… would we still be able to walk on ToT or RnRC (surely not SDD or Smugglers Run, right?)? Otherwise, those rides aren’t in the plans for the day unless we get a same day FPP.

Sorry for so many questions - and thanks for any advice!

Ha. also going to HS on 2/13 with DS2 & DS4. Our big dilemma is we have a SDD FP for 5:50pm and would love to switch it to 8am but then i would assume the lines for the other two toy story rides would be crazy long with all the star wars people in the parks. maybe we should just keep the pm fp for SDD and plan on doing the other toy story rides in the early evening when lines aren’t forecasted to be very long. Good luck in your planning. We may plan on doing other Star Wars stuff in the parks in the am or just not show up until late morning. Good luck getting a BG.

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you and everyone else trying to get in will be there at 6:50 am. I’d be there more like 6:30. you need time to go through security, tapstyles. If you arrive at 6:50 i would say its unlikely you get in before boarding groups open up.

Since you’re making an extra effort to get a BG, I’m assuming that’s somewhat important to y’all, so I agree it’s better to be there at least 30 min before opening, whenever that turns out to be. (It will most likely only take you 10 min to get through security and tapstiles, but it’s not worth the gamble.)

They’ve been queuing people up a various points within the park and not letting them proceed to rides until a few minutes after opening so people are stationary and can get their boarding groups before they start the rope drop speed walk. At least, they were 2 weeks ago when we were there and I haven’t heard anything different.

If you get there by 30 min before park opening and queue up for a ride of your choice, pretty much anything besides SDD and MFSR will be close to a walk on. If you think you want to try both ToT and RnRC, I’ve heard to do RnRC first because it is quicker and then able to get to ToT before a line builds, but I’m not sure how much time riding both takes along with going to fetch your kiddos.

Those are the only bits I can speak to.

Thanks for the advice! Will aim for 6:30 if we do it, and play it by ear if we do RnRC and/or ToT. I am a little scared of ToT but was thinking it could be a waste not to do something if we come early!

@pjurban let me know if you drop that SDD, I would love to grab it! ;).

I am going to leave the 10:45am TSM for now.

They allowed people to proceed down Sunset right at 7 this morning. We were right behind the RD crowd there (the “rope” was about halfway down the street), got our BG at 7:01 and still had a 23 minute wait at RnR (which opened at about 7:05).


@Nikkipoooo Thanks for the updated data! Do you remember about what time you arrived at security? And how long it took you to get through security and tapstiles?

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We had no bags, and walked right through at about 6:00. Two other ladies in our group who had bags arrived 10 minutes earlier and were quite a way ahead of us in the mob before the tapstiles. There was a line at security when they got there but they got a tip that the ones all the way to the left were empty.

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So you were there at 6 am and still waited 23 min for RNR? That’s massive crowds!

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It’s been very busy this whole trip (since Thursday), but when you’re there doesn’t have a thing to do with which group you get, as long as you’re through the gates before open (and that can take some time, which is why you still have to get there earlier for a higher CL). Then it’s a matter of whose app gets connected first.

Wow @Nikkipoooo thanks for the info. If that’s the case we will probably not bother and just get BG and leave (or… try to). What was the CL?

Also I am guessing you may not know since you were so far up but any sense if folks were not able to get tapped in by 7 if they arrived later, like 6:30 (my goal) or 6:45 (could be my reality)? Crazy to me RnR was so long, I can’t imagine what TSL was like! Hope the crowds aren’t dampening your trip. Enjoy!

Here is our timeline for a 7am opening on January 10 pieced together from photo time stamps. Not saying you should do this, but it worked for us on that day when we were running late. I think you will be fine getting there by 6:30.

6:45 exited Uber at HS
6:51 in line fearing we wouldn’t make it
6:57 already tapped in and well up Hollywood Blvd just walking with pace of crowd!
7:00 boarding group 29!
7:12 well into Batuu when we realized that the crowd had mostly turned into a line for MFSR that we abandoned.


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We were actually fairly far back… behind the ticket booths, all the way back to the planters between security and tickets. I’d say I still got through the tapstiles by 6:40 (it was a few more minutes for the rest of the group to all get there), and plenty more came in after us.

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Thanks for the details! I appreciate it.

Just to caution, they have had returns for just 1 hour for some BGs the past couple of days. So if you get an early BG, it could be called and your return window could close before 9:30am and you’d miss your BG while out of the park collecting the kids and getting ready.

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I saw that, thanks! Not sure how to navigate it… I guess we would just head back over and really call the favors in with my mom. :rofl:. I also have seen reports that you can actually ride after your window closes. So maybe I would Chance that.